NEWS
The NYPD Busted a Pot Party on 4/20 for Breaking Social Distancing Orders
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The cops initially checked out the party, which was allegedly hosted by a group called "Ganja Pigs," after receiving a tip that it was violating New York’s social distancing orders.
Published on April 21, 2020

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On 4/20, the New York Police Department busted a weed-themed party in Manhattan. But the police didn’t arrive at the scene because recreational marijuana is still illegal in the Big Apple. 

According to NBC News, patrolling officers received the party tip from someone in the area. The “concerned citizen” noticed an unusually large gathering of people on the third floor of a nearby commercial building. In New York State, gatherings of more than 50 people are currently banned while the state’s quarantine orders remain in effect. 

When the cops got to the party, only 38 people were there. But the boys in blue found something else: The party was allegedly hosted by a pot company called Ganja Pigs, and the officers discovered a duffel bag there filled with THC-laden weed, edibles, and “paraphernalia.” 

All 38 attendees received summonses for trespassing. Five attendees caught summonses on marijuana-related charges, too. NBC News reported that representatives at Ganja Pig could not be reached for comment. 

Over a year ago, the NYPD rolled out a new policy where police officers would issue a court summons instead of arresting someone for a low-level weed offense. That policy hasn’t been perfectly followed since it was implemented, but it’s a step in the right direction. 

Last month, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued stay-at-home orders to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, the virus that causes COVID-19. Although the coronavirus first appeared on US soil in Washington State, New York City rapidly became the pandemic’s epicenter. Currently, New York State has reported a total of 256,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and over 19,000 deaths. New York City alone likely has more confirmed cases than any country outside of the US. 

Ironically, the COVID-19 pandemic derailed any chance that New York’s legislators would legalize recreational marijuana any time soon. The 4/20 partygoers in Manhattan got screwed twice by the coronavirus: First by being investigated on the social distancing tip, then again for having weed. 

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Randy Robinson
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Based in Denver, Randy studied cannabinoid science while getting a degree in molecular biology at the University of Colorado. When not writing about cannabis, science, politics, or LGBT issues, they can be found exploring nature somewhere in the Rocky Mountains. Catch Randy on Twitter and Instagram @randieseljay
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